Orlando Bloom leads the cast in Tracy Letts' dark comic drama now playing at Trafalgar Studios.
The ingenious use of bathtubs elevates Soap from a run of the mill cabaret show to something special – it’s a wet and wild exploration of incredible dance routines, trapeze acts and comedic moments.
The Base Berlin troupe are a talented bunch. From the bizarre opening routine of bathtub dancing, they’re all given their moment to shine in this 70-minute show, which is wet and wild by the final act and guaranteed to raise a smile.
As a cabaret show, there’s not a huge narrative to Soap. At its heart, it simply demonstrates the incredible talents of the young cast.
There’s something for everyone here — opera, juggling acts, modern interpretive dance routines, mind-boggling contortionists, trapeze artists and fun comedic skits.
It is with the latter that Soap finds the closest thing it can to a narrative — and it works. The first act-proper is a mischievous girl with a water cannon (be warned, there’s a chance of getting wet at Soap, and it starts right here) who appears to have fallen into this strange land of bathtubs and their otherworldly proprietors.
She soon finds herself drawn into their world, watching from the sidelines as a series of stunning routines are played out in and around the tubs. By the end of the show, she’s in one herself, delivering another laugh-out-loud routine as she soaps herself up.
Fans of variety shows will find plenty to enjoy at Soap. The performances are sharp and the routines tight, there’s not really a weak link in the chain.
Performances range from comedy acts to incredible juggling routines to heart-breaking interpretive dance segments. It’s the inclusion of the bathtubs though (and the water they’re slowly filled with as the evening goes on) that lifts the show.
By Soap’s finale, there’s a couple of simply stunning pieces of theatre: a high-flying trapeze act where the performer is raised from a tub soaked with water; and a frenetic, impassioned dance routine that slips and slides around the tub, flinging water everywhere.
These moments in particular are truly breathtaking, but the truth is that Soap is full of captivating and clever moments that are sure to make you gasp, scratch your head, laugh out loud and cheer from your seat in Underbelly’s stunning Spiegeltent. You’re sure to be talking about long after you’ve left.
“Bath time will never be the same again” ★★★★★ – BroadwayWorld
“Sexy, thrilling and funny” ★★★★ – What’sOnStage
“Bubbling over with invention… Fantastic” ★★★★ – Metro
“Sexy, funny and physically breathtaking” – TimeOut
Soap runs at London’s Underbelly Festival on the South Bank until 17 June 2018.
Tickets are available now via Ticketmaster.co.uk